45-year-old Townsville man charged with online procuring offence

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This is a joint media release with NSW Police.

A 45-year-old Australian Defence Force member from Townsville has been arrested and charged with online procuring offences.

Earlier this year, officers from the NSW Joint Anti Child Exploitation Team (JACET) commenced an investigation after communicating with a person online.

It will be alleged the communications were sexually explicit and, at the time, the 45-year-old man believed he was communicating with a 14-year-old girl.

It will further be alleged in court that communications continued for three months.

With the ongoing assistance of the Australian Defence Force, the man was arrested by officers from the Australian Federal Police and NSW Police Force in Sydney yesterday (Thursday 25 August 2016).

Following a search of the man, police located an electronic storage device which contained child abuse material.

He was taken to Mascot Police Station and charged with using a carriage service to procure persons under 16 years of age contrary to Section 474.26 of the Criminal Code Act 1995(Cth), and Importing tier 2 goods, namely child pornography material, contrary to Section 233BAB of Customs Act 1901.

The maximum penalty for this offence is 15 years imprisonment.

The man has been refused bail to appear before Sydney Central Local court today (Friday 26 August 2016).

The JACET is a taskforce which brings together the AFP and NSW Police Force to combat online child exploitation, as part of a collaborated and coordinated national platform for policing agencies to address the abhorrent activity associated with child exploitation.

Members of the public who have any information about people possessing or accessing child exploitation material or conducting online grooming are urged to contact Crime Stoppers on 1800 333 000 or online at www.crimestoppers.com.au  

Media enquiries:
AFP National Media: (02) 6131 6333
NSW Police Media: (02) 8263 6100

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